Tag Archives: women’s fiction

Less stress in just 2 minutes???

26 Jan

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Happy New Year, beautiful girls!

Sorry it’s taken me so long to get on here and wish you a Happy 2014…We had a crazy start to our new year with being snowbound in another state and then, once home, battling the flu—TWICE! But life is back on track again now, thankfully!

Over the holidays, I watched a video in which the speaker shared some interesting research regarding body position and its effect on the body chemically. She gave a lot of information, but what I took away most was this:

 Body position can alter your body chemically, both positively and negatively.

This researcher found that the test groups members who (upon request) sat in a chair for two minutes making themselves physically small, close, and withdrawn:

1)    Did poorer in the job interview that immediately followed.

2)    Tested lower in testosterone (the get-it-done hormone) and higher in cortisol (the stress hormone)

The researcher also found that test group members who (again upon request) sat for two minutes with their arms raised in a victory pose:

1)     Did better in the job interview that immediately followed.

2)     Tested higher in testosterone (the get-it-done hormone) and lower in cortisol (the stress hormone)

She urged viewers to take just two minutes before important events (like a job interview, important test, etc.) and strike that victory pose. She is convinced it will make a real difference in the outcome.

Instantly, I thought of the different verses in the Bible that encourage us to raise our hands to our Heavenly Father.

Your unfailing love is better than life itself; how I praise you! I will praise you as long as I live, lifting up my hands to you in prayer. You satisfy me more than the richest feast. I will praise you with songs of joy. Psalm 63:3-5

God, come close. Come quickly! Open your ears—it’s my voice you’re hearing! Treat my prayer as sweet incense rising; my raised hands are my evening prayers.  Psalm 141:1-2

While we may think of worshipping God for who He is as benefitting us spiritually and emotionally, according to this research, it even helps our body work better! It actually reduces stress and equips us to succeed.

So let’s lift our hands to Him this year, even if for two minutes at a time, trusting Him to take care of our hearts, our minds, our bodies, and our dreams.

With God, nothing is impossible. And that victory pose is ours.

Believing with you for a great new year,

Lisa

photo credit

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What Girls are Saying — L., age 17

13 Dec
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I loved them! =) I read them all in a course of two days, I could hardly put them down. With a little suspense in them, it kept me right on reading, and a few turns I didn’t expect. I really really enjoyed reading them, and since then I have one friend borrowing mine to read and another in line to get them next. I love them, and my two friends are very excited to read them! =)
They were very well written and loved the story line. I really appreciate how it is a normal average girl in normal and real life situations. Things happen, feelings can take over, feelings can blind, but if we keep our eyes on Jesus, and focus on what He is training us for, He will reveal our Mr. Right in His perfect timing. I really enjoyed them and am so happy I bought them!
L., age 17
Have YOU read the Mr. Right novels yet? We think you’ll love them just as much as the reader above! (Check out the novels here if you haven’t read them yet. And please let us know what you think of Julia’s story!)

Grateful for You

28 Nov

Give & Take

Hey, beautiful girls!

Thinking of you this morning as we prepare for a day of family, friends, and some of our favorite foods.

Hope the words in the pic above encourage you to reflect past simply having a day off school or work. : )

May we all feel an overwhelming sense of reassurance and gratitude that God is ultimately in control, and He is taking care of us in both small and big ways.

I want you to know I’m very grateful for YOU being a part of my life via this blog!

Sending you much love this turkey Thursday…

Happy Thanksgiving!

Lisa

(Thanks to Pinterest for this pic!)

God-time Idea #3

21 Nov

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Here on the Mr. Right Series blog, we’re continually reminding you to spend time with God. He’ll speak to you as you read verses from your Bible and strengthen and refresh you as you spend time with Him in worship and prayer.There truly is nothing like His presence!

Maybe you read those posts and think, Okay, but what do I do? I have no idea where to start reading my Bible, and sometimes it’s really hard to stay focused.

Or maybe you say, I’ve been doing devotions for a long time…Have any fresh ideas for me?

With that in mind, we started sharing simple ideas for your time spent with God. We pray they help your relationship with Jesus grow more than ever!

God-time Idea #3:   Journal

Get a blank journal and instead of writing Dear Diary, write Dear Father, and express yourself to your Heavenly Father (who loves you and cares about what’s going on in your heart). You can write down thoughts, concerns, and what you’re learning as you read your Bible. Copy down favorite verses. Then talk to God about them. List your prayer requests to help be intentional with your prayers. Eventually, you’ll be able to look back and see just how He has answered them (sometimes in unexpected ways : ).

When you eventually use up that journal, flip back through the pages and see how faithful God has been to take care of you. You’ll realize how much more you’ve grown to love and trust Him.

Remember, it’s not about wanting to do 2 hours, so you do nothing. It’s about spending a little time each day connecting with your Heavenly Father. Without a doubt, it will change your life!

Have fun!

photo credit

 

Victim or Empowered One?

16 Nov

Ever wonder if you can really do it? (Only you know what “it” is for you: succeed at school, make new friends, change your choices to get to a better place, stay strong in areas you may be weak, find out who you were created to be, pursue a big dream you have in your heart…)

Sometimes we look at our situations and feel like they are too big to overcome.  But feelings often lie.

The truth is that God can empower you to not only face what comes in life, but enjoy victory over it.

Hope the amazing girl in this video encourages you that:

1) It’s important to be honest, intentional, and persistent regarding the challenges we face.

2) Attitude is everything, and we can choose to see challenges as opportunities.

3) It’s all in how you view yourself: victim or empowered overcomer.

4) Positive support in your life is crucial. Be real with positive mentors who love you, and then let them cheer you on!

5) With God’s help, hard work, and consistency, you really can do anything!

I have strength for all things in Christ Who empowers me [I am ready for anything and equal to anything through Him Who infuses inner strength into me; I am self-sufficient in Christ’s sufficiency].” Philippians 4:13 (Amplified; underlined emphasis added by me ; )

“Whatever I have, wherever I am, I can make it through anything in the One who makes me who I am.” Philippians 4:13 (The Message)

Love you, beautiful girls!

Lisa

She knew…Do you???

22 Oct

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Loved this thought on Pinterest today…

“She knew that she was formed by God’s hands, dreamed up in His heart, and placed in this world for a purpose.”

Do you know that, too?

Because God knew you before you were born. He has specific plans and a beautiful purpose for you, too.

Look at these verses in Psalm 139:13-16 (Message):

13-16 Oh yes, you shaped me first inside, then out;
    you formed me in my mother’s womb.
I thank you, High God—you’re breathtaking!
    Body and soul, I am marvelously made!
    I worship in adoration—what a creation!
You know me inside and out,
    you know every bone in my body;
You know exactly how I was made, bit by bit,
    how I was sculpted from nothing into something.
Like an open book, you watched me grow from conception to birth;
    all the stages of my life were spread out before you,
The days of my life all prepared
    before I’d even lived one day.

And the following verse in Psalm 86:13a (NLT):

…for your love for me is very great.”

Doesn’t it feel good to be so loved?

Praying for you this week!

Lisa

p.s. This pic was art created by www.redletterwords.com. (Lots of great word art there, btw)

Reality & Truth

16 Oct

LOVE LOVE LOVE this video! It perfectly illustrates so many things: unrealistic expectations, dishonesty in the media, our culture’s obsession with perfection, etc.

Today let’s talk about it in light of reality & truth.

Reality: If you were walking down that street shown in the video, you would look up and see a beautiful woman on that billboard. You might even wish you looked like her.

Truth: She is not real. Her eyes aren’t really that big, her neck has been lengthened and narrowed, and her cheeks have been shaved more shallow.

Truth: This billboard you’re supposed to want to look like is made up. Furthermore, that model was an attractive girl before they even started working on her!

My point? You are surrounded by realities every day. But I want you to start thinking about the truth that exists as well. Because running right alongside what is “real” is truth.

What’s the challenging reality that you’re facing right now? Because I promise you that God has a truth that trumps it!

Reality: There may be a guy at school that you really like, but he doesn’t seem to like you back or even think you’re pretty.

Truth: You are beautiful whether or not that guy thinks so. You are valuable, and God has a plan for your life that will take care of your heart’s desires in over-the-top ways.

Reality: Maybe you want to go to college, but your family has very little money.

Truth: Your Heavenly Father has all the money you need, and He can make it happen for you anyway! (Remember my college story?)

Reality: Perhaps someone at school (or work) is totally mean to you.

Truth: She’s hurting and miserable, lashing out at others from her own pain and problems. It’s not really about you at all! Seriously, it isn’t that personal.

Remember: We don’t always know the truth in a situation, but God does!

He is Truth! And He can help us navigate difficult waters.

Is your reality that you’ve gotten off track somehow?

Maybe you’ve made choices you don’t feel good about.
You’ve gotten into things you shouldn’t.
Watched stuff.
Said stuff.
Done stuff you know isn’t who you want to be.

The truth is:
God knows it all.
He cares so much about you.

His love is an everlasting love that is better, bigger, deeper, stronger, and more powerful than we will ever grasp this side of heaven.

God has a way to work things out for you.
He has a new beginning for you if you need it.
He has a plan for you.
You can still have a beautiful today and tomorrow as you give it all over to Him and walk close to Him.

So…
What’s your reality right now?
What’s the truth that God wants you to know about it?
Will you dare to trust Him with it?
Because your dreams are just beginning if you will.

Food for thought with love,
Lisa

Different is Good

1 Oct

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Here are a few follow-up thoughts from last week’s post about Dream Chic

As I said before, much of the fun of Dream Chic involves the fabulous women I get to spend time with over those few days. Like my mil Victoria Raftery, founder of Dream Chic, who isn’t just a fashion plate (this woman can work it!), but also a powerhouse of wisdom & encouragement, reminding us that our dreams count! GO FOR IT!

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Or Christine Martin, a firecracker from New York (now a Floridian) who reminds you not just who you are and what you can reach for, but how do-able it is to step into God’s plan for your life. (She’s REALLY fun to listen to, by the way!)

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I could list all the amazing speakers and how each one touched my heart in some way (some of them young women your age). But here’s my point today: Each woman had something significant to contribute that weekend, even though each one had a different look, personality, and message.

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The key was that each one was herself, and in that, her story shined beautifully.

Together, all of us speakers just being “us,” we made a lovely symphony that worked together to give God glory and encourage the many women listening. Women who came with their own unique situations, hopes, dreams, problems, and concerns, yet were able to process what was shared and leave that conference healed, refreshed, and forever changed. (Me included!)

Would that have happened if all of us told the exact same stories, challenges, struggles, and victories? Or did our varying personal journeys with the Lord help more women connect in some way to what was said?

So…how has God made you to fit in His beautiful symphony? Because if you try to be someone else, we all miss out on the sound He created you to provide. (Remember my post awhile back, Please Be You! ?)

No matter how you feel about yourself today, it’s important that you yield to the truth (because truth is truth regardless of our fickle, unstable feelings that change constantly).

The truth is:

You are beautiful and precious.

God loves you to such a profound degree, you get to simply enjoy it without ever fully understanding it.

Your Heavenly Father has plans for you today and tomorrow that are so special, so valuable, they are worth fighting for and protecting. Why? Because you are worth so very much to Him and to others (both those around you now and those you have yet to meet in the future).

Do you realize that your dream counts (the Dream Chic motto)?

Why does it count? Because YOU do!

Have a great day remembering that…
Love you, beautiful girls!
Lisa

marshmallow/live speaker photos credit

Beautiful Dream Chics

1 Oct

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Well, I’m back from the Dream Chic Conference about a week, and I am still TIRED! But it’s the type of tired where you can still smile and let out a contented sigh, knowing it was totally worth it (said from beneath the pile of laundry I have yet to finish!)

Joking aside, I hope you can find a way to join us next September. No matter what your age, you’ll LOVE it—and its $39 price! (It can be a great girls’ getaway weekend..Did I mention Chicago is only thirty minutes from Dream Chic’s Indiana location? Hint hint ; )

Anyway, like every year that I go, I had the chance to get to know some great women, including some beautiful “Dream Chics” shown in the pic above.

One young woman (who rededicated her life to Christ at the conference) wrote this powerful message on Facebook afterwards:

This was an experience I’ll never forget. Ever. The women’s conference where young people gathered all for the same thing, to glorify God for who He is. To realize how big a plan that God has for your life. After this experience, I feel as though God has a big calling on my life, that I don’t even realize yet. I have a very very strong desire to reach out to people. Very strong. I want to help people, I want them to know, You can have more to life. God is more, God is there for you. I may struggle, and I may have trials, but God is there. God is with me. I’m grabbing onto God, and I’m not letting go…

Wow! So much in those few lines…

Glorifying God for who He really is…
Realizing He has a specific plan & calling for you (whether or not you understand it all yet)
Knowing that no matter what comes our way, God is there for us….
Grabbing onto Him so tight, we won’t let go…
(And, I might add, knowing He will never lose His grip on us!)

Hope these lines encourage you as much as they did me!

You’re in my thoughts & prayers this week…

Much love,
Lisa

photo credit for top group photo

Why Can’t I Read This???

10 Sep

buried in books

School is back, and many of you are once again buried in books and computers, quizzes and tests, classes you like and maybe even those you can’t wait to be done with already!

As a former high school teacher, I’ve seen some pretty funny things over the years with students. One of my favorites was when I was monitoring an elementary student who was doing his science homework. His assignment was to write down the chapter vocab words in his notebook and then go back and fill in the definition of each term from the glossary located in the back of the book. (Ever had to do this?)

This boy worked quickly and diligently, proudly handing me his notebook upon completing all the terms. I scanned the list and took a double-take. Yep, every single term was perfect. (Seriously, not even one spelling error that I could see). I handed the notebook back to him and said, “Um…could you read me the first definition please?”

The kid glanced down, started reading, and suddenly stopped. A shocked look on his face, he cried, “What in the world? Why can’t I read this?!

We both had a good laugh when he realized that he had painstakingly copied every definition perfectly—IN SPANISH! Apparently, there were TWO glossaries in the back of his science book, one in English, the other in Spanish. This actually very smart student was so focused on what he was doing (finishing boring homework he had no interest in), he hadn’t connected with the words he was writing. He had written out hundreds of Spanish words without bothering to process or understand them. Had he simply paid attention, he would have noticed his mistake on the very first definition.

So, what’s the take-away? You really can go through the motions of doing something without connecting. Yet if you don’t connect, you’re often wasting your time. Or at least not getting as much out of the experience as you could have.

How are we simply “going through the motions” in our lives? Are there ways that we are missing out by not truly “connecting” to what we are experiencing? This can apply to school, work, relationships, or even the time we spend reading our Bibles or worshipping.

As we start a fresh fall season, take a moment now and then to check if you are really connecting to life around you. I promise that you’ll get a lot more out of…well, EVERYTHING, if you choose to be present in the moment.

(So happy to be back writing with you girls now that it’s fall. : )

Have a fabulous week!

Much love,

Lisa